My Mother's Ishmael: Working With Mother Cultures

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Cassondra Britton Ishmael essay For as long as I can remember I have always wanted to be a lawyer. My mother started working with the mentally ill before I was born, and my father has always worked in a prison; therefore I was exposed to the underbelly of society before I could talk. Like Gandhi’s mother, my parents taught me to understand that the people they work with are human beings that deserve dignity and help. They taught me that the “criminals” and “low lifes” they work with are ill and a lot of them are victims of their environment. Thus, it came as no surprise when my pastor, during conformation, told my mother that at age 11 I had a strong sense for social justice. For I was the only one in my confirmation class who would openly…show more content…
Environmental justice is in many ways a safety net used when humanity has destroyed the earth to the point humans no longer can live a healthy life style. This coincides with mother cultures perception. The taker mentality views the world as centered on humanity, for the earth is nothing more than a, “…human life-support system, as a machine designed to produce and sustain human life”(59). In other words, the world is meant to sustain man and nothing more. Therefore, humans do not have to take care of the earth, the earth is meant to take care of humanity. While environmental justice does address environmental concerns, it does so only when they affect human health. For example, if an oil spill happens an environmental justice lawyer will only care if the oil spill affected humans somehow. If the oil just killed the animals and eco system it wouldn’t be seen as an issue. The US environmental policy operates on the idea that unless you can prove, without a shadow of a doubt, that a chemical or process harms human health in someway; companies can dump whatever they want without regulation. The effect on the earth is not even considered unless it harms humanity in some way. Mother culture justifies this idea and man made environmental disasters by reinforcing the idea that humans are destined to rule this earth and it’s inhabitants. God made the world for humans and god made the animals for human consumption. Mother culture asserts, “Man is finally fulfilling his destiny. The conquest of the world is under way” (79). It is humanities destiny to become what we have regardless of the consequences. Environmental justice in this worldview is nothing more than a fall back to fix the problems humanity has created. This profession is meant to sustain human life in a world that has been

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